Hello Friends! 

The long anticipated day for “Carols & Cocoa –Coast to Coast” has finally arrived so I need to keep this post pretty short, as my afternoon time is totally booked!

The week has been quite full as we continued putting final touches on the aforementioned event, plus there was prep to do for tomorrow’s CTM Board Meeting and Monday’s Day Camp Committee. We are also keeping up with the weekly Advent Program for Team Alums and it has been a sharp learning curve as I try to grab and post their photos on mrsphilmoreschickens😊

There is always the usual day to day “office” work like sending out agendas, doing online banking, and answering correspondence so a part of each morning’s work is taken up with those tasks too.

Afternoons this week I have been spent glued to the sewing machine turning out the 16 Christmas gift bags my friend Linda ordered. It was fun sewing the pretty Christmas fabrics but 16 lined bags with self-fabric drawstrings is quite a lot to make 😊

Thursday I received an other order for a couple of face masks so I’m hoping to make a start on those this morning before getting ready for Carols & Cocoa. Jillian sent the preview video as a test and also to do a quick spelling check. It looks lovely and maybe me tear up as I watched all the people from 5 provinces who are part of the Day Camp Community.

Yesterday afternoon it was time for the weekly baking as Sue needed her GF bread and I wanted to do a batch of gingerbread cookies since there are several friends to whom I gift some each Christmas, plus I made porcupines and lastly tried Swedish St. Lucia Saffron buns ready for St. Lucia’s Day, tomorrow.

We had another snowfall midweek and today freezing rain is in the forecast so I have been making cosy comfort foods for dinners. With the oven on last evening I made Haloumi Bake, a perennial favourite and another evening cooked a Mushroom Risotto.

As time is marching on and Thomason must have a good long walk before I settle down for Carols & Cocoa, I’ll share that recipe, as it is super on a cold winter night.


Mushroom Risotto

1 Tbsp. Olive Oil

3 Tbsps. butter

1 small onion, finely chopped

½ cup diced bacon

4oz. sliced mushrooms

½ cup red wine

3 cups chicken stock

2 cups beef stock

1 cup Arborio rice

½ cup freshly grated Parmesan

¼ cup chopped flat leaf parsley

salt & pepper to taste


Heat 1 Tbsp. each of oil and butter and sauté the bacon to render the fat add the mushrooms and cook for 2-3 minutes. Remove the bacon and mushrooms with a slotted spoon. Meanwhile heat the stocks in another pan and keep at a simmer. Add the chopped onion to the fat in the sauté pan and cook briefly, add the rice and stir until it becomes opaque then stir in wine to deglaze. With the pan on medium-low start adding the stock ½ cup at a time, stirring frequently and adding more stock each time it has been   absorbed by the rice. When there is about 1 cup of stock left, return the mushrooms and bacon to the pan. Finally add the Parmesan, remaining butter and parsley, stir briefly and season to taste with salt and pepper. 

Serves 4